Textbook and course materials costs are increasingly problematic for students. Nationally, the average undergraduate student spends over $1,200 a year on textbooks and other course materials. The University Libraries can help faculty and instructors find and use alternative, high quality, low cost materials in their courses, and ultimately help save students money.

The University of Minnesota Libraries invites faculty and instructors to apply for a competitive grant to work with library staff to implement affordable high quality content options into their courses as an alternative to high cost commercial textbooks and other expensive course materials.

How to apply

All current faculty and instructors teaching courses at the University of Minnesota - Twin Cities are eligible to apply for a Partnership for Affordable Content grant. Please see the Call for Proposals for application instructions. Applications are being accepted now.

Information sessions

Interested faculty and instructors are encouraged to contact learnlib@umn.edu to set up a one-on-one session to learn more about the Partnership for Affordable Content:

What are more affordable options?

Working with librarians, participating faculty and instructors will select and implement new high quality and cost effective content for their courses. These new materials can include:

  • Freely available open textbooks
  • Library licensed resources such as ejournals and ebooks
  • Lawful determinations of fair use
  • Open education resources
  • Faculty created, openly licensed materials

Librarians will also help participating faculty and instructors deliver these new materials to students through various online tools such as library developed services and Moodle.

Application selection criteria

Proposals will be reviewed within the Libraries by eLearning Support Initiative Librarians, subject liaison Librarians, and Libraries Administration. Grants will be awarded based on criteria such as potential student savings, innovativeness of course materials, the use of open textbooks or open education resources, and sustainability of the new course materials in subsequent semesters.

For more information, including application instructions and a complete list of selection criteria, please see the Call for Proposals.


For any questions or comments about the Partnership for Affordable Content please contact Kristi Jensen and Shane Nackerud at learnlib@umn.edu.